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2007-08-16
 

Windows Briefcase synchronization problems with Vista

Windows Briefcase

The Briefcase feature in Windows helps you keep your files updated by automatically synchronizing multiple copies of individual files. If you use a desktop computer at the office, and you use a portable laptop computer when you are on the road, Briefcase synchronizes and updates the files on your desktop computer to the modified versions when you reconnect your portable computer to the desktop computer.[1]

The added security layers in Windows Vista create a peculiar problem for synchronizing .ZIP files, .PDF files, .DOC files created by MS Word, and .PCH files created by the C compiler of the MS Development Studio. The problem with the .PDF and .DOC files seems limited to cases when the files are downloaded from an e-mail attachment and stored in a folder that needs to be synchronized.

The problem becomes evident when you try to synchronize a Briefcase and a message appears saying that the file cannot be accessed for copying. Some files such as the .PCH files that can be regenerated by a compiler may simply be deleted from the source folder before the Briefcase is synchronized. However, for other files, the solution is to create a copy of the file, delete the original, and rename the copy to the original name. The reason for the problem seems to be that the files that cannot be copied do not have the "Authenticated Users" security attribute which is required to access a shared resource from another computer in the network. The following images show the attributes of the original which cannot be synchronized and the copy.

Attributes of a file that cannot be synchronized:
Attributes of a file that cannot be synchronized

The copy of the file has the "Authenticated Users" security attribute:
Attributes for copied file

[1] How To Use the Briefcase Feature in Windows XP


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